Superhero films are so prominent nowadays that it can be easy to forget they’re not all the actors involved in them are working on. The DCEU features multiple films and dozens of heroes, villains, as well as important supporting characters, from friends and love interests to co-workers… and the list goes on.
With so many already established characters, the DCEU offered roles to a great number of actors. Some returned to the universe more than once, some didn’t. But what is even more interesting is when the worlds collide and the former or current DCEU actors meet in other movies. Especially if their roles are significantly different from the ones in the DCEU.
10 Nocturnal Animals (2016)
Amy Adams stars in the psychological thriller Nocturnal Animals, and her role is much bigger than in the DCEU where she mostly appears as Lois Lane alongside Clark Kent aka Superman.
Adams plays Susan who’s not very very happy and lives an empty life. Susan finds comfort in a manuscript written by her ex-husband. One of the heroes of the manuscript is a cynical detective played by Michael Shannon who appeared in Man of Steel (2013) as Superman’s great enemy, General Zod. Interestingly enough, fans of the MCU will find the film intriguing as well since Jake Gyllenhaal (MCU’s Mysterio) acts in it too.
9 Her (2013)
Speaking of Amy Adams, she appeared in films alongside the DCEU villains more than once. In 2013, Joaquin Phoenix, the star of the celebrated recent Joker (2019), played a man who falls in love with artificial intelligence (voiced by the Black Widow’s actress Scarlett Johansson).
Unsurprisingly, this untraditional romance doesn’t end the way many people would suspect. Adams plays a woman named Amy who used to date Phoenix’s hero, Theodore when they were in college.
8 The Master (2012)
Joaquin Phoenix often chooses challenging roles… in fact, he seems to prefer them. Just like the Joker, the hero of the film The Master is far from ordinary.
He’s a former soldier who struggles with living once again in the normal society. His life changes when he meets a man whose teachings he finds fascinating. Amy Adams plays the wife of the titular master (Philip Seymour Hoffman), and it’s interesting to compare the relationship between her character and Phoenix’s in this film and in Her.
7 Z For Zachariah (2015)
This 2015 film is one of the most underrated sci-fi movies of the last five years. It works with three main characters, all of them played by actors who also appeared in superhero movies.
Chris Pine will soon reprise his role as Steve Trevor in Wonder Woman 1984, Margot Robbie gained even more fame as Harley Quinn and Chiwetel Ejiofor joined the MCU in Doctor Strange (2016). Needless to say, not all of the heroes like the others very much in this film, and in a world that went through a nuclear war, that causes problems for them.
6 Smokin’ Aces (2006)
Before he became famous as Captain Kirk in the Star Trek franchise, Chris Pine appeared in multiple romantic comedies… and also in the action thriller Smokin’ Aces.
Another future hero of the DCEU also played a part in the film, none other than Ben Affleck. Unfortunately for Affleck, his character doesn’t do so well in this movie where dangers and enemies lurk on every corner.
5 London Fields (2018)
With a rating of 4.2 points on IMDb, London Fields didn’t get much love either from the audience or the critics. The story of a woman who tries to seduce three men, one of whom could be her future killer, simply didn’t capture those who watched it.
Nevertheless, it still deserves a spot on this list since it cast two prominent actresses of the DCEU – Amber Heard (Mera) and in a smaller role, Cara Delevingne, who portrayed Enchantress in the Suicide Squad (2016).
4 Her Smell (2018)
It’s unclear whether Amber Heard and Cara Delevingne are friends or not – but just like Amy Adams and Joaquin Phoenix, Heard and Delevingne appeared together in more than one film.
Their second shared film from 2018, Her Smell, focuses on a punk rocker (played by Elizabeth Moss) who’s trying to help her band succeed. This time, Heard’s and Delevingne’s luck turned, and Delevingne is the one who has a bigger part in the film.
3 Bombshell (2019)
The recent film Bombshell focuses on a story about sexual abuse and women who find the courage to speak about their experiences. It all starts with Nicole Kidman’s character, Gretchen Carlson, who sues the founder of Fox News.
Kidman gives her all to this dramatic role, and Margot Robbie also shows her a more serious side of her acting – especially when compared to the likes of Harley Quinn.
2 Bobby (2006)
Not every role is a starring role, but that doesn’t make the supporting characters in movies any less worthy of actors’ attention. Mary Elizabeth Winstead recently tried to avenge her family in Birds of Prey (2020) as Huntress. But long before that happened, Winstead had appeared in the historical drama about sennator Robert Kennedy.
And she wasn’t the only DCEU actor who did so – Laurence Fishburne (Perry White in Man of Steel) also had a smaller part in the film.
1 The Last Thing He Wanted (2020)
The DCEU is so large and works with so many characters and actors that it’s entirely possible for two actors to meet in a non-superhero film instead. That’s also the case of Ben Affleck, the former Batman, and Rosie Perez who portrayed Renee Montoya in Birds of Prey.
However, the film stars another DC actor – Anne Hathaway who played Catwoman alongside Christian Bale’s Batman in the Christopher Nolan Batman trilogy.
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